My wife, Lori, had an early morning appointment in Providence. I dropped her off and then headed over to the Providence Place Mall. It was early so I figured I could get my walking done and do some window shopping for Christmas too. It was a practical way of tackling two goals with one trip.…

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Have you had the chance to come into the library to see Roving Roger? If you do not know already, Roving Roger is a 7-foot-tall statue of Roger Williams, who in 1636 founded Providence. The statue will be at the library until Jan. 6, 2020. Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea developed the exhib…

The recent reporting that the Westerly Town Council has authorized joint work with the Rhode Island Airport Corporation (RIAC) on its general strategic business plan creates both opportunities and challenges (“Town, RIAC to work together,” Westerly Sun Dec. 2). Opportunity for dialogue betwe…

It was a moment worthy of a Hallmark Christmas movie. With the historic hotel as a backdrop, the excited crowd waited in eager anticipation. Santa Claus arrived right on schedule via a Watch Hill Fire truck, dubbed “The North Pole Express.” When Daniel Hostettler, the president and managing …

What changed, and when did it change? How did we evolve from being happy and relatively secure human beings — going along on our life’s path, interacting with friends and family, commuting to work, attending church or synagogue, enjoying free time freely — to where we are today? The boogeyma…

The holiday season should be merry and bright, not devastating and gloomy.  However, each year, holiday fires claim the lives of more than 500 people and cause over 2,000 injuries. Cooking and decorations are the leading cause of the nearly 47,000 home fires that occur during the winter holi…

When Scott Davis and the M/3 Worship Band step up to the platform at Westerly’s Central Baptist Church on Sunday, Dec. 8, at 7 p.m., it will be the realization of a dream for Janet and her team. The idea for the Hope Christmas Concert began when God whispered in Janet’s ear, “Trust me! We ca…

Many are Westerly’s sons who moved away. Fewer still are those prodigals returned, as I recently did following a mixed career in nearby Massachusetts. But I like to think we are united in a single memory, varied though that is, of our salad days. I have many, but one of my most upright milep…

In the evening, I have been watching “Fake of Fortune” on Netflix. This BBC series follows journalist Fiona Bruce and art expert Philip Mould as they investigate mysteries behind paintings. It is like watching a police procedural as the team attempts to establish the provenance of the piece …

I visited Stand Up for Animals the other day to purchase their new 2020 Pet Friends Calendar (by the way, if you haven’t gotten yours as yet, you can get them from SUFA or at a number of stores in the local area). Make sure to pick up a couple for your animal-loving friends; they make wonder…

It is estimated there are 22 veteran suicides every day. This number originated from the VA’s 2012 first suicide report that analyzed service member deaths from 1999 to 2011. With this first report a Strategic Plan for Suicide Prevention was identified in a public health framework that encom…

I was on my way to New York City to go to a conference last weekend. I needed a coffee and decided to stop at Dunkin’ Donuts. Now visiting a doughnut shop is dangerous for a guy who is always watching his weight. What’s worse was the fact that I was in the mood for something sweet.

My father’s name is Frederick A. Stanley. He was a fire chief. Not just any old fire chief, either. No, that never would have been good enough for him. For him, only the greatest fire chief most firemen in Rhode Island will ever have the privilege of knowing would do — so that was what he se…

Thanksgiving is next week and I suspect when you think of errands you need to run and places you need to go to get ready for the holiday, you don’t think of the library. Instead, most people are either figuring out their travel plans, or thinking of errands involving the grocery store and re…

We have all heard the term “probate.” But, we may not be exactly sure what this means. It may sound daunting, but don’t be intimidated by the phrase. From the Latin for “to prove,” probate is the court-supervised process of authenticating a last will and testament of a deceased person and th…

I love the radio. I remember listening to Brad Davis and Bob Steele as a teenager. There is so much to hear. I’d stay up on New Year’s Eve and record the top 100 hits from WDRC on my cassette recorder. Today I go back and forth between Jimmy and Shelly on WCTY and Lee Elci on 94.9 in the mor…

Hopkinton Town Councilor Sharon Davis made a statement at a Feb. 6 Planning Board meeting that Hopkinton uses 99.77 mW of energy every day. I spoke with her there, and Sharon was kind enough to share her handwritten notes with me. I looked them over and I emailed her what I understand to be …

Happy Veterans Day, and a resounding “Thank You” to all of our friends who have served in the military, near and far! Every year we celebrate this federal holiday (always on Nov. 11, save for a few strange years in the ’70s when it was switched to the fourth Monday in October), and yet there…

As is my custom this time of year, I make it a point to remind everyone who is in the Alzheimer's caregiving role how important it is to be prepared for the holidays. Truth be told, the things I'm going to be sharing with you today you can use year around whenever a big gathering is on the agenda.

He said, “I could use your help. We have our banquet coming up and I thought the kids would like to have their pictures taken with someone famous.” I have to confess that I don’t think of myself in that way. I’m out and about and have done a lot in the community. So people tend to recognize …

True confession — I have never been a member of a book group. I think they are a great idea, but when I think about them, I start to feel the familiar anxiety of school days. What if I have nothing insightful to add? What if I just don’t understand? Then I remind myself, no one cares enough …

It hit me just the other day. When you’re a child, you get invited to birthday parties. You have cake and ice cream, laugh and talk with your friends, and plan what you’re going to be when you grow up. You yearn for the future.

Last summer I was in Nashville for a conference. As I was walking through the airport I almost fell over a woman who looked like Joni Eareckson Tada. I came upon her as I was going around a corner. Mortified by the near mishap, I apologized. I looked at her and said, “Do you know who you loo…

We do a brisk business in travel guides here at the library. We have a great selection of very recent travel books for all sorts of other countries, and they are a very popular part of our collection. At the moment we have 2019 guides on our shelves for England, Ireland, Italy, Germany, Fran…

The VFW this month is highlighting its success in securing benefits for veterans. In fiscal 2018, more than a half million veterans represented by the Veterans of Foreign Wars received more than $8.3 billion in disability compensation and pension benefits, exceeding the previous year's total…

I saw his obituary in the paper. It read, “Raymond Booker Jr. (Phil) was born in Greenwich, CT ....” It went on to list his family and his work history. One thing it didn’t note was the number of lives he had changed through his faithful witness. Obituaries rarely do that. Only God knows how…

As a Hopkinton town councilor, I voted to reappoint Harvey Buford to the Conservation Commission because of his past hard work and true desire to help implement the goals of the commission in the name of the residents of Hopkinton. Although I do not always agree with some of his ideas, I bel…

There’s been a big push in recent years to “diversify shelves” — to read and provide access to books by and about persons of color, people who identify as LGBTQ, women, people with disabilities, and others. Even with all the discussion and progress that has been made so far, the Cooperative …

Autumnfest is upon us! This Saturday the senior center will be abuzz from 8 to 11 a.m. with members and their friends eating, taking chances on the Penny Social, checking out the goodies in the bake sale, or checking out the art show by out Wednesday and Thursday painting classes.

It was an unseasonably nice day in late September. It was one of those occasions where you just had to get out of the house. It gave me the perfect excuse to take the afternoon off and head up to the Big E, New England’s great state fair. I hopped in my Mustang convertible and hit the road t…

On Oct. 7, the Westerly Town Council presented two resolutions on parking permits that would not only change the parking fee structures but would change which taxpayers could park in the Old Westerly Town Beach lot and on Larkin Road. The new parking ordinances, if approved, will prohibit se…

Holiday season is right around the corner. Who doesn’t love to celebrate things big and small? We all know about the big holidays. You know, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, my birthday. There is something being celebrated every day of the year. Maybe those days are not as noteworthy as m…

Through the graciousness of my local bookstore I was recently invited, along with another author, to do a talk about my book at the local library. We were allowed to take questions and I was asked by one of the attendees if I thought she was on the “road to dementia.” Apparently she was havi…

This will be a really busy week at the senior center. Tuesday a representative from the Veterans Administration will be available at the senior center from 9:30 until about noon to answer questions and assist with paperwork. Back-up will be offered by the Jim Salisbury of the VFW/DAV.

‘Please don’t pick me,” I thought. I looked down and away. I tried to shrink out of his line of sight. Then the Chief said, “Cal, why don’t you and Bob grab the high-rise pack and practice what we just went over.” There were lots of experienced firefighters in the room. They had probably don…

This fall, the library is offering many great events! If you are wondering about what is going on at the library, our events are listed on our website, and we have paper calendars available at all of our desks that you can take home for your refrigerator. All library events are free and hand…